PRESIDENT BARACK OBAMA: As I've said repeatedly, I am prepared to work with Democrats and Republicans to do the things we need to do, to grow the economy and create jobs and get our fiscal house in order over the long run. Although I should add, this shutdown isn't about deficits or spending or budgets. After all, our deficits are falling at the fastest pace in 50 years. We've cut them in half since I took office. In fact, many of the demands the Republicans are now making would actually raise our deficits. No, this shutdown is not about deficits, itâ€™s not about budgets. Itâ€™s about rolling back our efforts to provide health insurance to folks who don't have it. Itâ€™s all about rolling back the Affordable Care Act. This more than anything else seems to be what the Republican Party stands for these days.
I know it's strange that one party would make keeping people uninsured the centerpiece of their agenda. But that apparently is what it and, of course, what's stranger still is that shutting down our government doesn't accomplish their stated goal. The Affordable Care Act is a law that passed the House, it passed the Senate, the Supreme Court ruled it constitutional. It was a central issue in last year' election. It is settled. And it is here to stay. And because of its funding sources, it's not impacted by a government shutdown. And these Americans are here with me today because even though the government is closed, a big part of the Affordable Care Act is now open for business. And for them and millions like them, this is a historic day for a good reason. Itâ€™s been a long time coming.